What's Your Story: Brad Taylor


Brad Taylor, Lieutenant Colonel (ret.), is a twenty-one-year veteran of the U.S. Army Infantry and Special Forces, including eight years in 1st Special Forces Operational Detachment - Delta. He is the author of the NY Times bestsellers One Rough Man and All Necessary Force. He lives in Charleston, SC with his wife and two daughters. For more information visit him online at www.bradtaylorbooks.com.

With your military career, do you incorporate actual events you experienced into your writing? 
I shy away from including anything that has actually occurred to me, because most of that is classified. Having said that, it's impossible not to refer to things I've done or seen. It's the same as someone writing a scene in a grocery store. How would he or she do that? They'd think of a grocery store they had been in before and build the scene from there. It's the same with me. When constructing a scene, I use the knowledge I have. This leads directly to the next question, precisely because I do have a healthy appreciation for how the intelligence and military systems accomplish their missions, and sometimes this is classified. The last thing I want to do is give the enemy an edge, fiction or otherwise, so I do find myself studying a scene to make sure I haven't said anything I shouldn't. Sometimes I paint myself into a corner whereby I find that what I've written is inappropriate to describe to fans" simply because it's classified, and I'll go back and rewrite.

Why did you start reading Vince/What was the book? 
I was given the book Term Limits by a guy on my SF operational detachment while I was serving on Okinawa. Sorry to say it didn't give Vince any money, but that's when I began reading him.

Do you have a favorite book or character?
Obviously, it would be Mitch Rapp. Who wants to read about some milquetoast?

Who do you envision when you read about Mitch Rapp? 
No one. I let the author create the character, using what he envisioned. Certainly not me. Mitch Rapp can run a six minute pace for days, and has the call sign Iron Man. Definitely not me. 

If you could be a character in a Vince Flynn novel, what would you be? 
Ten years ago, it would have been Mitch Rapp, but that's pretty much been beat out of me. Now, probably Thomas Stansfield or a male Irene Kennedy. I'd want to be the one pulling the strings, the guy controlling the Orion team. 

As a writer in the political thriller genre, what makes Vince’s books compelling to you? 
Probably wish fulfillment. In reality, it's very, very hard to get missions accomplished, with a plethora of wickets to jump through. Make no mistake, the wickets are there for a reason, but it's nice to read about a guy that can be turned loose without any of the usual roadblocks. It's the same reason I write the series that I do, a sort of "if only they'd let this happen....". Having seen what I have, I wouldn't want Orion Team - or my own Taskforce - to exist in the real world, but it's fun to read about in fiction. More than that, though, it's because Vince gets it right on all of the little details. Nothing makes me put a book down faster than a guy shooting a .51 caliber sniper rifle or visiting the DCI on the fourth floor of the CIA. 

What are you working on currently? 
I just finished Enemy of Mine, the third book in the Pike Logan series, which will be out in January of 2013, and I'm currently pounding away on Book IV.